The Amazon rainforest called the “lungs of the Earth” is burning at a record rate. Earlier this month, Brazil declared a state of emergency over the rising number of fires in the region. So far this year, almost 73,000 fires have been detected which marks an 83% increase from 2018 and the highest number on record since 2013.
Scientist indicate that the rainforest is typically wet and humid, July and August, the onset of the dry season, are the area’s driest months, with “activity” peaking by early September and stopping by mid-November. These fires are largely linked to people clearing out the land for farming or ranching.
Satellite images show fires in the Brazilian states of Amazonas, Rondonia, Para and Mato Grosso. The state of Amazonas is most affected.
Effects of damage to the Amazon go far beyond Brazil and its neighbors. The area’s rainforest generates more than 20% of the world’s oxygen and 10% of the world’s known biodiversity.
The Amazon is referred to as “the lungs of the planet” and plays a major role in regulating the climate. The world would drastically change if the rainforest were to disappear, impacting everything from farming to the water we drink.